If you have a negative opinion about Kesha in this moment, good luck keeping it that way as you read the open, honest essay that she wrote about her experience of rehab.
It appeared in the August issue of Elle UK, and she answers pretty much any and every question that we could’ve possibly had about what went on with her. She opens up in an incredibly brave, well-stated way, and I think her words will resonate with a lot of young people — fans of hers and otherwise — who might be experiencing the same issues.
As you may recall, Kesha checked into rehab earlier this year and stayed for about two months, and the first rumor that she wants to address is that she did so to get treatment for drug or alcohol abuse.
“I’ve written songs about partying, but my dirty little secret is that I’m actually incredibly responsible. I take my music and career very seriously, and certainly didn’t land in this situation from partying. [...] I talked about sex, about drinking. When men do that, it’s rock and roll, but when I did it, people assumed I was a train wreck.”
Like many artists, Kesha has (or had — one wonders if she discarded it with the $ in her name) a carefully-cultivated public persona designed to sell music and garner fans, but just because she’s hard-partying and body-positive in her songs didn’t mean that’s who she was in real life.
“I’ve always tried to be a crusader for loving yourself, but I’d been finding it harder and harder to do personally. I felt like part of my job was to be as skinny as possible, and to make that happen, I had been abusing my body. I just wasn’t giving it the energy it needed to keep me healthy and strong.”
Yikes. That’s some scary stuff, which is why I’m all the more impressed with Kesha for sharing her struggles with an eating disorder with…well, the entire world, basically.
“I played confident but still felt like an outcast. The music industry has set unrealistic expectations for what a body is supposed to look like, and I started becoming overly critical of my own body because of that.”
She was under intense scrutiny as a performer and as a woman, but instead of buckling under that pressure, she used it to help open her eyes to the fact that she needed help, and inspiring her to go get it at a facility designed to treat people who suffered the way she did.
“I was there for two months in total, and during that time I began to feel a shift in my mentality and really started to understand my own self-worth…I could focus on my music and my happiness and not what I looked like.”
Yes! I love it! This is exactly what rehab is for, you guys — for people to honestly evaluate themselves so they can make real, healthy changes in that moment and forever and ever the rest of their lives.
“I’m not fully fixed – I am a person in progress, but I want to be part of the solution, not part of the problem. Even I need to be reminded that we are who we are. And when I say that, I fucking mean it, now more than ever.”
Standing ovation, girl. Seriously.